Friday, September 26, 2008

Timed Writing

45 minutes.

That’s all it takes.

What you may ask? Writing of course!

I got this idea at the Heart of Dixie meeting earlier this month. The topic being discussed was writing a 50,000 word book in a month (Don’t ask me the details, because all I came away with – is the 45 minutes—ok, so my memory is going along with all sorts of things…*sigh* but that’s another blog)

I struggle with finding time to write and I know every single writer out there has the same problem. Worse, procrastination is written into my DNA, which no amount of caffeine, threats, etc ever get rid of. BUT, I can trick it.

How?

Setting a timer for a certain amount of time (like 45 minutes), sitting my rear into a chair and typing away.

Yes, I admit, sometimes I only get a page done, but other times I get five or more pages done.

It’s not perfect (thank goodness for revisions)—but it’s WRITING. The trick is to slap down that inner critic (and trot it out only when you are at the revision phase), and write. That’s been the hardest thing, because I’ll be writing and think, “Well, that sucks, I need to change it…” but I tell myself “FINISH THE STORY FIRST”.

It’s been painful.

Try it though, 45 minutes (or even 15, 20, or 30 minutes). See what happens.

Note: It’s been proven that you should only sit at the computer for 45 minutes max, and then get up get a drink, walk around , and then return. You are more productive. (Hey—maybe I can tell my boss that….)

Keep writing everyone!!!!

10 comments:

Crystal-Rain Love said...

Sounds like you were referring to NaNoWriMo (National November Writing Month) in which you take the pledge to write a 50000 word manuscript during the month of November. I tried it... and gave up about 10 days in. LOL! In my defense, I must state I was actually working on 3 books at once so it just got too crazy. I should try the 45 minute trick... my only "trick" was setting a daily goal of X amount of words and not allowing myself to play The Sims 2 until I reached the goal. I had 4 1/2 chapters done in 10 days so it wasn't so bad.

M.V.Freeman said...

Yes! That is what I was meaning--NaNoWriMo..but I was too darn lazy to look it up.

I think your way has merit too! :)

And speaking of the Sims game, I have had it for a year, and never loaded it....I am afraid to, because I know I'll be enthralled by it.

Christy Reece said...

I'm thinking about doing NanNo this year. Depends upon whether I have revisions to do instead. I've heard wonderful things about it.

On the other hand, I am definitely staying away from this Sims thing I've been hearing about. I already have way too many addictions!

Naima said...

I tried NaNo last year and fell waaaay short of the 50,000 word mark! LOL! I think I had about 10,000. But, I did come up with a beginning to a manuscript that is totally "un-like" me that I had to step out of my box to do. So, that was definitely an amazing plus. I plan on giving it another try this year and if nothing else just break my count from last year! I really think I can swing 45 minutes a day! What a great way to look at it! Now if I can only find that dang computer through the hot mess of my room...

Julie J. said...

Wow! I did not know you were supposed to get up from your computer after 45 minutes. This could explain a lot of my fidgeting! I really like this idea. Do you think this would work for editing also? I have just finished writing my book but cannot seem to make myself sit down and start the editing process.

Crystal-Rain Love said...

LOL! The Sims 2 is VERY addictive. I've been playing for years, have all the expansion packs, etc. Unfortunately, my computer keeps freezing up now when I play so I'm missing my fix... but I guess it's kind of a good thing since I have new contracts and really need to focus on my manuscripts... but I miss my families!!!!

M.V.Freeman said...

Christy, Let me know if you do the NaNoWriMo, I've toyed with it and I am not sure I can make it this year.

Still it sounds like a nifty concept.

M.V.Freeman said...

Naima,
I think 10,000 words is a heck of a lot better than none--so that's fantastic. What kind of story did you come up with? What do you think you will write this time?
(Those things always intrigue me)

M.V.Freeman said...

Julie,
The 45 minutes works for everything (even tasks you hate to do!). Try it and see if it works. I find it helps me push through areas of my story when I'd rather just walk away.

M.V.Freeman said...

Crystal,
I have a friend that loves the SIMS as well. How many families have you created?